Karina Smirnoff Leaves 'Dancing with the Stars'

The pro dancer who has been on 'DWTS' since season 3 confirms that she won't be returning to the show for the next season.

AceShowbiz - "Dancing with the Stars" loses another pro dancer. Karina Smirnoff is the latest star in the dance troupe to waltz out of the ABC ballroom. She announces on Instagram that she won't return for the upcoming season 20.

Many of you have been asking if I will be back for season 20 of DWTS and I wanted all of my incredible family to hear it directly from me," she wrote. "After a lot of thought and prayer, I've decided to focus my energies on some other exciting endeavors including adding author to my resume."

"I have absolutely loved dancing for all of you for all these years and feel blessed to have been given a platform to put my passion for dance, choreography and creativity on display," she went on. "DWTS has been a huge part of my life for the last 10 years and i will always have a special place in my heart for it."

"I am thrilled that now you will be seeing more of me in new arenas in the days and weeks to come. My first book 'We're Just Not That Into You - Dating Disasters From the Trenches' was released today and I look forward to hearing from you as you read it! I love all of you so very much and couldn't feel more grateful for your support in all that I do! #werejustnotthatintoyou."

Karina Smirnoff, 37, joined the dancing competition in the third season where she finished second with Mario Lopez. She won once with army veteran and soap opera star J.R. Martinez in the thirteenth season.

The dancing show will return in March. Cheryl Burke leaves for a new NBC show and Derek Hough takes a break to play the lead role in an upcoming Radio City production. Head judge Len Goodman is also expected to leave after season 19. Derek's sister Julianne Hough, a former "DWTS" pro dancer, returned last year as a new addition to the judge panel.

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